Farmer hurt in June 2017 'police firing' in Mandsaur turns out to be poppy husk smuggler

19-year-old Rodsingh arrested with 32 kg illegal poppy husk was among the 6 farmers given Rs five lakh each compensation.

Published: 24th June 2018 12:45 PM  |   Last Updated: 24th June 2018 12:52 PM   |  A+A-

A picture of arrested Rodsingh Sondhiya. (Photo | Praveen Bajpai)

By Express News Service

BHOPAL: A 19-year-old youngster, who was among the six farmers injured allegedly in June 6, 2017 police firing on a violent mob in Mandsaur district and subsequently compensated by Madhya Pradesh government with Rs 5 lakh -- has now turned out to be a drug smuggler.

Rodingh Sondhiya, 19, a resident of Nahargarh area of Mandsaur district was arrested by Narayangarh police on Saturday evening with 32 kg illegal doda-choora (poppy husk) loaded on his motorbike.

"He was nabbed following specific intelligence inputs. On being grilled by cops, the arrested youth revealed that he had sourced the illegal poppy husk from Shyam Prajapat in Narayangarh-Mandsaur in the morning and was taking it on the motorcycle for supply to Sai Krishna Dhaba in adjoining Neemuch district," SP of Mandsaur district Manoj Kumar Singh told The New Indian Express on Sunday.

"The arrested person has been booked under provisions of NDPS Act and further investigations are on," added Singh.

"The police has been constantly saying that several anti-social elements were involved in last year's violent farmers' agitation. This latest development proves the police's long-standing point correct," claimed Singh.

Importantly, roadside dhabas in Neemuch and adjoining Rajasthan often work as safe storage houses for illegal poppy straw and husk which are then smuggled for being used by drug addicts in Rajasthan and neighbouring states.

On June 6, 2017, five farmers were killed and six other farmers, including Rodsingh injured in alleged police firing on a violent mob at two spots in Pipliyamandi area of Mandsaur district. Rodsingh was among those injured in firing outside Pipliyamandi police station.

While the kin of deceased farmers was awarded compensation of Rs one crore each by the state government, those hurt in the same firing, including Rodsingh were rendered Rs 5 lakh each.

Reacting over Rodsingh's arrest and seizure of illegal poppy husk from his motorbike, State BJP spokesperson Rajnish Agrawal said on Sunday that "we've been continuously saying that some anti-social elements were involved in the violence which led to the June 6, 2017 tragic episodes."

On the other hand opposition, Congress' State Spokesperson Pankaj Chaturvedi said "we'll have to first go into details of this latest case. The ruling BJP can easily get innocent farmers implicated in false drug smuggling case for giving bad name to the farmers stir."

A judicial commission headed by retired judge of High Court Justice JK Jain was constituted by the Shivraj Singh Chouhan government in June 2017 to probe the two incidents of June 6, 2017 firing and related episodes. The probe panel has recently submitted its report to the state government.

While the actual report summing up the panel's findings is yet to be tabled before the state assembly, part of its contents has got leaked in a section of media, as per which the judicial commission has concluded that firing on the violent mob by police in self-defence was unavoidable and justified.

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